Book Series Explores German Army Perspective in WWII

Book Series Explores German Army Perspective in WWII

Thursday, June 29, 2023

“The soldier, above all others, should be familiar with history.” When Secretary of War Elihu Root, father of the Army War College, wrote that in 1901 he reflected a universal truth: we must study past warfare to prepare for future conflict. 

Today, the U.S. and its NATO allies are concerned about large-scale combat operations in Europe, due in no small part to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. We have not seen warfare on that scale since World War II. The aftermath of that massive conflagration saw the publication of the Wehrmacht im Kampf series, a collection of books that provided the German Army’s perspective of WWII operations throughout the continent and North Africa.

The AUSA Book Program is now partnering with Casemate Publishers to release the first English-language versions of these titles. The series editor is Prof. Matthias Strohn, a Senior Associate Fellow and Head of the Historical Analysis Programme at CHACR, the independent think tank for the British Army, and a member of the Department of War Studies at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst. He is also a Lieutenant-Colonel in the Germany Army and serves as a member of the military attaché reserve.

The AUSA Book Program sat down with Prof. Strohn to discuss the Wehrmacht im Kampf (WiK) series and its most recent publication, Rome to the Po River: The 362nd Infantry Division, 1944-45.

AUSA: When was the original WiK series published? Who were the authors?

Strohn: The original series was published in the 1950s and ’60s. The books were written by a number of authors, predominately former German military officers who had fought in the Second World War.


AUSA: What was the purpose of the series?

Strohn: The purpose of the series was to present the German view of the Second World War and to provide in-depth analysis of the engagements and battles, often with the unspoken aim of providing intellectual input for NATO and its operational and tactical planning during the Cold War. 


AUSA: How did you become the series editor for the new English-language version?

Strohn: I had published books with Casemate before, so the publishing house approached me and asked if I wanted to be involved - being a German speaker might have helped!


AUSA: What inspired your interest in military history?

Strohn: I have always been fascinated by military history. As a child I read all the military history books in my father's library, and I listened to the war stories of my grandparents. I was hooked!


AUSA: What is one thing you would like readers to know about the latest title in the series, From Rome to the Po River?

Strohn: This is a divisional history, following the 362nd Infantry Division through the Italian campaign. The book contains a number of highly interesting tactical case studies that are worth studying even today.


To order a copy of Rome to the Po River or any of the other titles in the Wehrmacht im Kampf series, please visit